U.S-Iraq security pact will turn Iraq into a colony: peace activist

TEHRAN, July 12 (MNA) - U.S. peace activist Robert Fantina believes that the proposed security agreement between Washington and Baghdad will turn Iraq into the United States’ ‘newest colony’.

In an e-mail interview with the Mehr News Agency last week, Fantina also described President George. W. Bush’s nearly eight years in office as a ‘reign of terror’ which has been ‘a complete disaster’.


Following is the text of the interview:


Q: What is your opinion of the proposed security agreement between U.S. and Iraq? What does the U.S. seek from the agreement?


A: The new U.S.-Iraq security agreement should remove any doubt about the U.S.’s intentions in Iraq; it sees that nation simply as its newest colony. The U.S., not the Iraqi people, will control the major security institutions in Iraq: Defense, Interior and National Security. Military contracts will also be controlled by the U.S., all this for a period of ten years. Certainly no one is sufficiently naïve to believe that this ‘agreement’ will be allowed to expire at the end of that timeframe. U.S. military basis in Iraq, like those in South Korea and so many other countries, will be permanent.


One wonders why Iraq might agree to this new arrangement with the U.S. Why would a nation that was invaded by the U.S., and has been terrorized by it for over five years now, agree to turn over all security concerns to the occupying nation? Perhaps it is the kind of ‘agreement’ that Mr. Bush delights in: do things his way or risk even more bombs and terror.


This security agreement is made with the apparent belief in Washington, D.C. that it will benefit the U.S.; there is no question about the fact that it further disenfranchises the people of Iraq since it is simply another step in the theft of their nation from them. Yet Mr. Bush and his neocon cohorts have continually underestimated the will of the Iraqi people to oppose them. This latest ‘agreement’ will be enforced only though the shedding of the blood of more Iraqi men, women and children, but that does not appear to concern Mr. Bush in the least.


Q: What is your assessment of Bush’s record at home and abroad, especially in regard to his strategy of invading Iraq and Afghanistan?


A: President Bush’s eight-year reign of terror in the U.S. has been a complete disaster. Domestically, the nation is in terrible and deteriorating shape. Personal bankruptcies are at record levels, an estimated 10% of Americans are in danger of losing their homes and unemployment continues to increase.


But it is probably Mr. Bush’s foreign policies that have brought the most disgrace to the U.S. Afghanistan was invaded ostensibly because Osama bin-Laden was alleged to be hiding there, shielded by the Taliban. But seven years later, bin-Laden is still not captured and the war continues to rage. Mr. Bush has even said he is not that interested in capturing the alleged mastermind of the September 11, 2001 attacks on the U.S.


But Mr. Bush’s ultimate disgrace is the invasion and subsequent occupation of Iraq, and all the lies that enabled him to carry out that invasion. Even some of his former closest advisors have written of Mr. Bush’s rabid desire to invade Iraq when there was simply no justification for doing so. Yet for an administration run by former oil company executives, the thought of all that oil under the desert sands of Iraq was too great a temptation. Why not lie to the world in order to obtain it? That stealing Iraqi oil has proven more difficult than Mr. Bush initially believed has not deterred him from his goal of pumping it into the U.S. Iraq is a nation soaked in the blood of Mr. Bush’s innocent victims.


But Mr. Bush is not alone guilty for the invasion and continuing occupation of Iraq. In November of 2006 the American people, tired of war and the lies that spawned it, gave Congressional power back to the Democrats in what was widely seen as a referendum on the war. Since the Democratic Congress members were sworn into office in January of 2007 they have proved themselves to be spineless and not interested in being accountable to the people who elected them. They have continued Mr. Bush’s war with little more than a whimper of protest.


Q: What the next U.S. president should do?


A: The Democratic and Republican parties have each chosen their candidate for the 2008 presidential election. Republican John McCain vows to continue the most disastrous of Mr. Bush’s policies. The Democrat, Barack Obama, has promised to remove all U.S. troops from Iraq within sixteen months of his inauguration.


A prompt, safe exit of U.S. soldiers from Iraq will benefit Iraq, the U.S. and the world. It will take some time for Iraq to form a government, or multiple governments, from the mess the U.S. has made of it, but the Iraqi people, if given the opportunity, will do so. There may be an increase in violence initially, but that must be seen as better than the long-term violence the U.S. causes.


Additionally the next president should meet with the leaders of the nations that Mr. Bush has labeled ‘enemy.’ The next president should travel to Iran and Cuba, among other nations, to build understanding rather than walls. There should be negotiations with these nations in order to learn how the U.S. and these nations can benefit each other. The world has had enough of threats and belligerency from the U.S.; it is long past time for the U.S. to take a different approach and work as peace-maker, rather than war-monger.


While this is what the U.S. should do, there is little chance that the world will see this major a change in U.S. policies. The U.S. is an imperial nation, seeking conquest of countries that will enrich it in one way or another, and has been from its earliest history. This long-standing policy will not change with one election. The best that can be hoped for is a departure of U.S. troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, and perhaps an absence of any additional imperial military adventures for the duration of the next president’s administration.





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